Advanced Search

What Is It?

Advanced search refers to the ability to search for notes using more than just simple text searches within a Mac note taking app. This broad category includes the use of advanced search techniques, such as latent semantic indexing or fuzzy text processing, to locate notes that have the same “meaning” as your search terms. It also includes any innovative methods of presenting notes that make it easier for you to quickly locate a note you’re looking for.

Compared to the typical and often useless text search feature in most applications, advanced search is invaluable.

Mac Notes Apps with This Feature

What Else Should I Know?

Very few Mac note taking apps support advanced searching. It’s far easier to implement simple text search than to create an advanced search method, so most app developers opt for simple text search. And with so few apps offering more than basic search, Mac note taking app developers feel little pressure to provide more in the way of searching than their competitors.

Some apps allow you to tag notes with keywords and claim this feature as an advanced search technique. While keyword tagging is useful, it is not advanced searching. First, keywords are just text, and so searching on keywords is at its heart just a form of simple text searching. And second, keyword searching demands too much on the part of the user because it requires you to diligently assign keywords to your notes. If for whatever reason you fail to keep up with keyword tagging, keyword searching becomes useless.